not a pretty picture. not a good. not a bad. picture. but an argument.

Monday, September 10, 2012

trying to pray





Trying To Pray by James Wright
 
This time, I have left my body behind me, crying
In its dark thorns.
Still,
There are good things in this world.
It is dusk.
It is the good darkness
Of women's hands that touch loaves.
The spirit of a tree begins to move.
I touch leaves.
I close my eyes and think of water

14 comments:

  1. these photographs were taken some time ago, not to illustrate praying per se, but to illustrate my being in the world, my loving, my smallness and vulnerability, the body's strange sense of being and yet not being - but these are all aspects of prayer, are they not? and do we not sometimes have to leave behind (sometimes with revulsion) the violence and repugnent nature of the beautiful body to move toward clean prayer? (and do we not sometimes have to move directly through the beautiful body to move toward clean prayer?)

    it is so complicated.

    i am in love with this poem by james wright)))) the first time i heard it was in this bed. james owens read it to me and i wept.

    the world is pounding with mystery.

    xo
    erin

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  2. I love the poem and that accompany it photographs,
    a masterful job
    Hugs

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    Replies
    1. damaso, there is nothing masterful about it. you are too kind. it is only a small human endeavor, a meager cast of the rod at being here)))

      when i was 22 or 23 i took part in an interfaith tour, at that time representing agnostics. some very kind and wise Bahá'í (younger then me at the time) tried to teach me how to meditate. it was fruitless. i have always been a rambunctious spirit but now the desire to pay attention, to have gratitude and give thanks, to pray, infuses all that i am, save a few times of error.

      i hope the translation of the james wright poem does it justice, or that you seek out a worthier translation. it is important.

      xo
      erin

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  3. which aspect, rosaria?

    do you know how i yearn to see us all naked? i laugh, not necessarily in the obvious way, but that too. (it is an excercise.) but i look for you in crowds. sometimes i see you.

    xo
    erin

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  4. erin, lately i have felt it so strongly - the good darkness. in it we know nothing. this is always true of course. the good thing about this darkness is that it makes us see, with resplendent clarity, that our not-knowing - our ignorance if you will - is a gift not a curse. in fact it is who we are, all we are, and we are blessed beyond comprehension.

    it is a profound poem, and your pictures speak to me of a birth, a death, whispers and deep silence. it is all prayer.

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  5. andreas, the good darkness))))))) yes, my friend, it is a gift. so too our smallness, our vulnerability, our body's being and not-being, our mortality. all offer us the opportunity to be and to love, to develop empathy and compassion, otherwise, we enter the other darkness where there is little goodness or hope.

    thank you for hearing and seeing these things, you, rosaria and damsao. i am so happy to be with friends.

    xo
    erin

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  6. Ces photographies sont magbnifiques... quel beau travail et quelle poétique interprétation du réel

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  7. Replies
    1. michael, at least trying:)

      xo
      erin

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    2. i mean for me praying is kind of being empty, still, giving thanks,,,letting go of trying,,,i like to visit your blog,,,

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"Words at the limit of hearing, attributable to no one, received in the conch of the ear like dew by a leaf." (philippe jaccottet) or even a quiet presence is appreciated))